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Mediating Beyond Covid: Hacks, Craics and Crocodile Tears


Navigating conflict is hard, it often takes up too much time and money, it reduces innovation and productively and impacts relationships and reputations. So, we avoid it.


In late 2019 COVID emerged, bringing with it a whole new set of problems, conflicts, and confusion that we all had to deal with. For leaders across disciplines, it required a different sort of response; they have had to develop the capacity to rise above the crisis and provide safe ways forward. Conflict didn’t go away, it changed and, in many instances, grew, with differences dividing workplaces, communities and families.


In 2020, a small group of mediators gathered on Zoom to share stories as they struggled to adapt, adjust, and survive whilst supporting people through conflict.  Over a glass of gin, laughter and sometimes tears, we learnt a lot and I wanted to find a way to share our insights with others.


This collection brings together professionals across disciples who are experts in dealing with conflict, confusion, and change. From Mediators, Lawyers, HR, Marketing and Executives, they are sharing their insights to help you better manage the complexities of negotiation, conflict and problem solving.


We hope these real-life stories of gritty leadership and hard conversations, spiced with touch of humour, will make it easier to talk about conflict. We want to help you navigate this space with clarity, confidence, and some fun. So, pour yourself a gin and be prepared to discover that hard conversation don’t have to result in a fight. With a little preparation, some key skills and a growth mindset, peace is possible.

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Award winning Conflict Strategist and Mediator, TEDx speaker and best-selling author, Sarah Blake elevates leaders, empowering them to overcome conflict barriers. Bringing clarity to complex decision-making during confusion, conflict, and crisis, she helps transform problems into opportunities.

With over 26 years of professional experience, Sarah has engaged in some of the most complex conflicts in Australia and beyond, and has worked across multiple industries and jurisdictions. Sarah has delivered talks across the world, both in person and online, and is considered a thought leader within the conflict resolution industry. This has enabled her to contribute to international advisory boards and support the development of the next generation of peacemakers. She is an accredited mediator with Resolution Institute and International Mediation Institute, is Co-Chair for Maat and the Australian Ambassador for Mediate Guru.

Sarah is also a multiple best-selling author and regular contributor to media in Australia including television, radio and print where she is talking all things conflict from growth leaderships, people dynamics and culture.

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